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Photo: Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

General Motors confirmed Wednesday that it is in discussions to sell its Lordstown, Ohio, plant to electric vehicle maker Workhorse and a newly-formed corporate entity, confirming an earlier pair of tweets by President Trump.

The big picture: The Lordstown plant's planned closure by GM is a key 2020 issue for Trump, who wants to shore up his place with blue-collar voters in a key swing state. But while the news might seem good for the plant's workers on its face, Workhorse is no GM — it has a market cap of just $55 million and 98 full-time employees, compared to the 1,600 workers who were employed by GM at Lordstown.

  • The announcement says that the newly-formed corporate entity would acquire the Lordstown plant and be headed by Workhorse founder Steve Burns. It added, "Workhorse would hold a minority interest in the new entity."
  • GM also said it will invest $700 million in three locations in Ohio, creating 450 new jobs in the process.

The full text of Trump's Twitter announcement:

"GREAT NEWS FOR OHIO! Just spoke to Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors, who informed me that, subject to a UAW agreement etc., GM will be selling their beautiful Lordstown Plant to Workhorse, where they plan to build Electric Trucks. GM will also be spending $700,000,000 in Ohio in 3 separate locations, creating another 450 jobs. I have been working nicely with GM to get this done. Thank you to Mary B, your GREAT Governor, and Senator Rob Portman. With all the car companies coming back, and much more, THE USA IS BOOMING!"

What they're saying: In a statement, GM CEO Mary Barra said, "We remain committed to growing manufacturing jobs in the U.S., including in Ohio, and we see this development as a potential win-win for everyone. Workhorse has innovative technologies that could help preserve Lordstown’s more than 50-year tradition of vehicle assembly work."

  • "The U.S. economy and our core business are strong, so we can expand our commitment to U.S. manufacturing and Ohio and create job opportunities for our employees."
  • "We also expect to bring more jobs to the U.S. over time in support of the expected provisions of the USMCA."

Go deeper: GM's Lordstown closure set to be a key 2020 issue for Trump

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Updated 44 mins ago - Health

The next big bottleneck in the global vaccination effort

Illustration: Rae Cook/Axios

The world still needs more coronavirus vaccines, but an additional bottleneck has emerged in many low-income countries: They need help getting shots in arms.

Why it matters: Increasing vaccination rates across the world is both a humanitarian necessity and the best way to prevent dangerous new variants from emerging, but it increasingly requires complex problem-solving.

Updated 1 hour ago - Health

COVID-19 Omicron variant cases identified in Europe, U.K.

People wearing masks walk in London on Nov. 25. Photo: Li Ying/Xinhua via Getty Images

Health officials in the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany announced on Saturday that they've detected the first known cases of the new COVID-19 Omicron variant.

Why it matters: The discoveries come as the world scrambles to respond to concerns over the new variant, discovered in South Africa earlier this week.

Black Friday shopping up from 2020 but trails pre-pandemic levels

Shoppers carry their purchases during Black Friday shopping at Fashion Outlets of Chicago in Rosemont of Greater Chicago Area, Illinois on Nov. 26, 2021. Photo: Joel Lerner/Xinhua via Getty Images

More shoppers flocked to stores on Black Friday this year compared to last, but online shopping was lower than expected, according to data from Friday.

Driving the news: Online shopping was on the lower end of what was expected, largely because people had been ringing up their shopping carts earlier in the year in an effort to skirt potential supply chain issues, according to the Adobe Digital Economy Index.

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